Content marketing is kind of a big deal right now. If you’re paying attention to the larger world of marketing and advertising, you’ve probably seen this trend. Major brands like McDonald’s and Coca-Cola have completely refocused on creating content.
While you may not have the global reach like these companies, it’s still important to create valuable content for your audience.
Here are the 3 pillars of content excellence you have to follow when creating your content.
1. Give your audience advice, not a sales pitch.
One thing you have to realize is your content isn’t meant to directly sell a product. Your audience isn’t looking for a sales pitch, and that means your content stream shouldn’t be self-promotional. If the majority of what you talk about is how your company and product is great, your audience isn’t paying attention.
Content marketing is a way to establish yourself as a thought leader within your industry. You should be focused on solving the problems facing your audience. When these readers see you as a thought leader, they are far more likely to believe you when you say “This product makes the whole process really easy.”
You need to prove to your audience that you have an in-depth knowledge of their problems and position yourself as a solution.
Before you start to get angry, there are still ways you can use content to promote your business. Actually, you can leverage these engaged audiences with calls-to-action. These calls-to-action allow you to directly promote your product or service.
2. Nobody wants to read your copy.
I hate to tell you this, but your audience isn’t a faceless crowd hanging on your every word. For the most part, they really don’t even care what you have to say.
Your readers have lives. They aren’t on your website because they are interested in you, your company, or how you’d like to “position” yourselves within the industry. Ultimately, your visitors have a problem and they are really only interested in what you can provide them.
The reason they read your blog, whitepaper, or ebook is simply because they are interested in the topic.
When writing, don’t forget that not every member of your audience is on the same experience level. What you are writing needs to stay as simple as possible. This is also important because you have to fight harder and harder everyday to get your audience’s attention.
Crafting valuable, easy-to-read content will ensure that your audience will turn to you when they need questions answered.
3. Listen to your audience.
Marketing isn’t one way communication. Your audience can and does communicate with you, but you have to be able to translate what they’re saying.
For instance, they can comment on social media, click your links, read your content, and talk about or to you on forums. Each instance represents an important interaction between your brand and your customer.
You can easily use these measured interactions to your advantage.
Thanks to marketing technologies like marketing automation and analytics, you can measure which pieces of content are successful. You can see the number of clicks, likes, comments, bounce rate, click-through-rates on CTAs, and even eventual conversions coming from your content.
This is valuable information you can use to refine your content marketing efforts. You can disseminate important information like which types of content perform best with your audience. It can even help you refine your understanding of the exact topics and titles your audience engages with.
When you understand what is successful with your audience, you can focus your efforts to create the content that converts.